Friday, July 31, 2009

Report Back From San Juan Island

This last week I was on vacation. I went to San Juan Island just north of Seattle where you have to take a ferry to get there. I visited Bellingham, WA first to look at a school there. I am planning on going back to school so that was my first stop. Just a few miles south of Bellingham is a beautiful state park that borders the bay. On the rocks you can find purple starfish. One got caught out of the water and was near death when we found it and put it back in the water.

The ferry in Anacortes was our next stop. A view of a quaint shore with rocks and old piers and wildlife allowed our wait to go quickly. There were blue herons flying and dancing all over which I tried my hardest to catch on camera. I had never seen so much activity from these beautiful creatures before. 

Under every other rock was a crab or tiny hermit crabs. The algae the lined the rocks and piers and everything else along the shore was intricate and colorful, displaying a different world the shore sometimes sees when the tide is in.

While on the ferry, but not yet moving, we discovered a rookery for comerants in the metal framework for the ferry gates. Nests were crammed into tiny spaces while older babies and their parents interacted. I find these birds to be intriguing, but as babies they aren’t the cutest.

The baby seagulls on the other hand, were adorable. We had to rush to the top of the ferry to get a decent shore of these birds and we got there just in time, since the ferry was off for the islands.

San Juan Island is my favorite, since the west shore is a great spot to look for orcas. Once we got to town, we headed in that direction. Almost as soon as we could start looking for orcas, we saw one. He was just swimming by, but it’s an orca! Just seeing this breath taking animals enough to make your day. We followed the orca, running to a good viewing spot of Lime Kiln Park, also know as whale watch park. We got there just in time to watch him go by and get some more pictures.

That night we went back to town in Anacortes after setting up tent at San Juan Park. We read about a pizza place which offered a vegan option, but they only took cash so we ended up going to Golden Triangle, a Thai place. Last time I went to a Thai restaurant I was unfamiliar with, I discovered there was only one menu item I could eat. My first question at the restaurant was vegan options. I was so happy when the owner knew the word vegan, and when I ordered, let me know if something was not vegan. We ended up getting vegetables and tofu with peanut sauce and vegetables and tofu with a garlic sauce. This was the freshest tasting Thai food I’ve had in a long time! The vegetables tasted like they came right out of someone’s garden and included a wide variety of mushrooms, asparagus, green beans, bell peppers, broccoli, cauliflower and more. I recommend anyone who is looking for a good place to eat while in Friday Harbor, Washington, go to this place! So good!

The rest of the trip we ate sandwiches. A ban on campfires was announced the next day so the other food I was planning was out. I love campfires so I don’t have propane or anything else. Luckily I like sandwiches.

The last full day on San Juan Island was spent with a tour guide from The Whale Museum. She was so knowledgeable and I asked her questions about her field and she was so inspiring to pursue a new career (I’m looking into aquatic sciences). This island and this environment brings me to life so the idea of spending a career around this is thrilling. I didn’t get my close ups with the J-pod (orca family) like I did last time while kayaking, but this was a really great trip!


Cassidy Lee said...

I'm guessing you went to Larrabee, our favorite place to get back to nature when we lived there. It's breath taking. Looks like a nice trip.

Zoey said...

That looks like a great vacation, thank you for sharing your pictures.